Format

Send to

Choose Destination
Horm Behav. 2005 Dec;48(5):522-7. Epub 2005 Aug 18.

Oxytocin is associated with human trustworthiness.

Author information

1
Center for Neuroeconomics Studies, Claremont Graduate University, Claremont, CA 91711-6165, USA. paul.zak@cgu.edu

Abstract

Human beings exhibit substantial interpersonal trust-even with strangers. The neuroactive hormone oxytocin facilitates social recognition in animals, and we examine if oxytocin is related to trustworthiness between humans. This paper reports the results of an experiment to test this hypothesis, where trust and trustworthiness are measured using the sequential anonymous "trust game" with monetary payoffs. We find that oxytocin levels are higher in subjects who receive a monetary transfer that reflects an intention of trust relative to an unintentional monetary transfer of the same amount. In addition, higher oxytocin levels are associated with trustworthy behavior (the reciprocation of trust). Absent intentionality, both the oxytocin and behavioral responses are extinguished. We conclude that perceptions of intentions of trust affect levels of circulating oxytocin.

PMID:
16109416
DOI:
10.1016/j.yhbeh.2005.07.009
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Elsevier Science
Loading ...
Support Center